Monday, 24 October 2011

Review: Grip - A Memoir of Fierce Attractions by Nina Hamberg

Goodreads Summary: Set in San Francisco in the 1970s, Grip: A Memoir of Fierce Attractions is the true story of how a teenager fends off an armed intruder with only her wits, then goes on to become the toughest female martial artist in her karate school and an early advocate for women’s rights. Yet in private this five-foot fighter forms one disastrous relationship with men after another. Ultimately, Nina Hamberg finds her real battle is an internal one. She has to bond with a different kind of man and allow herself to be vulnerable. Winner of the Maui Writers Conference Rupert Hughes Award and the Bay Area Independent Publishers Association Book Award for “Best Memoir,” Grip reads like a novel. It is by turns riveting, funny, poignant and wise.
Hamberg has woven a memoir with wide appeal. She traces her emotional journey while providing such fast-paced action that reviewers call Grip a page-turner.
***I received this book from the author for an honest review.***
Wow, Wow, Wow. My review will not do this book and its author any justice. This is the first Memoir I have ever read and it certainly won’t be my last.  Nina Hamberg has had a remarkable life and is an inspiration to me. I loved reading her story. It was an emotional roller-coaster. The ups and downs of her family life, a stalker creeping into her bedroom at night, her explosive relationships with men, her fathers’ illness, a broken marriage and finally comes David.

Nina goes through life haunted by the memory of a stalker who took advantage and the fact it was ‘swept under the carpet’ and not addressed. From there she experiences a series of dysfunctional relationships before marrying Lee, the most intriguing and often, very scary, person in her life (in my opinion!). The men at her karate school called her Might Mouse, and rightly so.  Through all the hardship Nina learns to love and accept herself for who she really is.  She is a survivor. She does all of this with complaint and is truly inspiring.

It is gritty, honest and refreshing. She holds nothing back. If you are worried about being bogged down by a memoir, then fear not. Nina is a wonderful writer and the whole book flows beautifully and reads like a novel. The story moves along at a perfect pace; giving just enough details and keeping it interesting. I definitely recommend this powerful and emotional story. 5/5 Stars

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